The omni-present Sunsilk

Thought I would start this thing off with the on-going case study of Sunsilk which I'm sure many of you have probably heard of, seen on TV or seen in-store.

My interest in Sunsilk began when I came across them in-store with a series of humorous cross category placements far from the hair care aisle in both grocery and mass. When they launched this campaign they viewed the store truly as a medium capitalizing on the reach of the whole store, not just the HABA categories. Placements ran near soda, ice cream, laundry and so on, all with contextually relevant messages that brought the brand's fun, humorous personality to life.

While this intrigued me, I was more impressed as I began to dig deeper and see how the in-store leg of the campaign worked so well within the broader media mix.

As I am not an 18-34 year old female, I haven't seen a ton of their TV, but by all accounts, most young women have. Along with a ton of national magazines, in-theater ads and online media, the TV rounded out a compelling campaign which had roots in a larger idea. A non-traditional idea for the category certainly. The brand is the star of the spots, this fun, clever persona which they created takes center stage, not Hair. There aren't dramatic slow mo shots of hair being flipped about present in any of the ads.

The last piece of the campaign, and the goal of much of the communication was a drive online to, the brands site. After some initial intro which set up the tone not only for the site but the brand, the first thing I noticed were the two promo modules on
the homepage, one for a free sample and one for a sweeps. While there is certainly plenty of content around the site to keep users around for a while (video, blog, advice etc...), they didn't completely disguise there intentions... get a free sample, enter a sweeps, we are incenting you interact with us and our brand.

While I don't find my hair to be particularly in need of special care, I signed up under the free sample section and was met a few weeks later with a nice DM piece with my sample and a couple other fun things which again illustrating the playfullness of the brand and typically driving you back online to the site.

Overall, this started in-store, but through that I stumbled on to a very interesting and well glued-together wholistic campaign.

Subsequently, now out of the launched phase, they have evolved there in-store strategy with stronger purchase drivers. Currently they are now more focused in the hair care aisle with banners bookending the product and a coupon machine to drive trial.

Final bits...

1. In terms of non-traditional, I don't know the category
tremendously well, but I find it interesting that their spokespeople
are three hair models.

2. Integration, integration, integration...they do a great job
of maintaining consistency of message, look and feel accross all
their vehicles, but, they don't neccessarily try and do everything
everywhere. For example, we never see the spokespeople in-store,
but the same humor is used.

Strange side note:
I'm not sure if its a new Unilever thing, but I saw another
out of category placement today at Safeway for Suave in the laundry
aisle. Interestingly, its the second Unilever brand in the past
couple months to put hair care in the laundry aisle.


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